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One Health Certified: a uniform labeling system

A poultry veterinarian wants to see a labeling system for meat and poultry products that reduces consumer confusion.

Dr. Don Ritter with North-Carolina based Mountaire Farms found 18 different antibiotic labels on products in grocery stores.  “There’s no way for consumers to know what that means,” he says.  “It’s all private label claims.  Whereas this is a public, benchmark, and level-the-playing field program open to any producers.”

He tells Brownfield the One Health Certified program simplifies the labeling process and recognizes that the health of animals, people, and the planet are linked together.   “The way we do things in one bucket effects the other bucket,” he says.  “For example – if we take all the antibiotics out than the animal health and welfare is not going to be as good as it should or could be.”

The One Health Certified labeling program will be tested first in more vertically integrated sectors like poultry, turkey, and pork and could be seen as early as this summer.  He says compliance will be ensured by a government audit through the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service.

The program was designed by a coalition of chicken, turkey, and pork stakeholders along with NGOs, university scientists, government advisers, and retailers and restaurant chains.

Ritter spoke at the Animal Ag Alliance meeting in Kansas City, MO.

  • There’s so much misguided information provided to consumers. Thanks, Dr. Don, for your dedication to get clear and accurate information to the end consumer.

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